How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask TJ, Esq. Your Own Question
TJ, Esq.
TJ, Esq., Attorney
Category: Personal Injury Law
Satisfied Customers: 12398
Experience:  JD, MBA
Type Your Personal Injury Law Question Here...
TJ, Esq. is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

How would one determine the value of pain and suffering? I

This answer was rated:

How would one determine the value of pain and suffering? I am retired so have not lost work days from an injury. The injury is to the best of my knowledge not one that will have further damage other than the last 5 weeks of Severe discomfort. Only a consultation with a doctor is involved. I have filed a claim with the business that was in my opinion at fault, though do not know where it is going, I have never filed a claim before.
Hello and thank you for allowing me the opportunity to assist you.

There is no "official" way to do it. There are various methods to help decide what to ask for, however.

One method is to retain an attorney, who can review verdicts from other lawsuits in your jurisdiction (and surrounding jurisdictions) where the injuries were similar. That is probably the best way to figure it out.

However, if you do not want to retain an attorney, then there is a rule of thumb which states that pain & suffering is 3 times the medical bills. For example, if the medical bills were $20,000 total (even if all were paid by insurance, you should include them all), then the pain & suffering you'd ask for would be $60,000. But that is just a rule of thumb. It is not "official," and in many cases it may not be appropriate. It depends on the seriousness of the injuries, whether they are long lasting, etc. For example, if two people have roughly the same injury, but one was permanently scarred for on the face, and the other was not, then the one with the scar would probably get more because that person is dealing with more, even though the actual medical costs could be identical. So it really just depends on what you're dealing with. But 3 times the medical bills may be a good place to start.

Does that answer your question? Please let me know if you need clarification, as I am happy to continue helping you until you are satisfied. Also, your positive feedback is much appreciated. Thank you for using our service!

If you would like to direct additional legal questions to me in the future, then please type "To VAMD" in the subject line of your question.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Since the medical cost is minimal, I would not base the value on that, nor would I consider contacting an attorney as an advocate. However for five weeks of pain and severe discomfort and emotional discomfort I would think there should be some dollars and cents that could be awarded. Perhaps if I could learn that a personal attorney might be available for a benefit ONLY if an award is given, I might reconsider my first statement. How does one come into that kind of relationship and know they are legitimate advisors?

Hi again.

The vast majority of personal injury attorneys take cases on a contingency fee basis, which means that the only attorneys fees they receive are in the form of a percentage of a settlement/judgment against the defendant. Accordingly, it won't be hard to find an attorney who uses the payment model that you're asking about. You could probably call any personal injury attorney in the yellow pages to find one using that model. You may even want to call one of the people who advertise on your local TV stations. They are generally the most successful.
TJ, Esq. and 6 other Personal Injury Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Would you consider my situation one that could be supported? or do you need to know further details?

Hi again.

I'm not sure what you're asking. What do you mean "supported"?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I mean is it one that would have possibility for a financial award?

Hi again.

I'd need to know the facts of the case. What happened?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Will my response be able to be viewed by other customers of this site? I feel a bit of hesitation to make full disclosure of "what Happened". It touches on an invasion of my personal body, I know you are a personal injury attorney so are probably not a stranger to these kinds of reports. I just do NOT want it viewed by other viewers searching out answers.

Hi again.

Yes, it's possible that this question would appear for anybody to see in a Google search (as the terms of service for the website explained when you signed up and asked the question). I understand if you don't want to share the details. But I cannot give you any sort of reasonable answer as to whether you are possibly owed compensation if I don't know what happened.

I can tell you very generally that if your injuries are not extensive, then you may not receive much from pain & suffering. On the other hand, if you're talking about deliberate conduct and not just negligent behavior, then you may be entitled to punitive damages (and that's when the largest awards are made).
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Okay I think you have supplied me with adequate answers and I appreciate your forthrightness. I will soon decide what is best for myself and others in this situation. Thank You for your assistance and bearing with my slow input.

You are quite welcome. Thank you for using our service!

If you would like to direct additional legal questions to me in the future, then please type "To VAMD" in the subject line of your question.